Bonded labour is rampant, state govt to conduct survey: SC
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday directed all the states and Union territories to conduct a survey on existence of bonded labour in their regions and take steps to rehabilitate them.
The bench of justices K S Radhakrishan and Dipak Misra said all the states should submit their bi-annual reports to the National Human Rights Commission which would monitor the implementation of Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act.
"Fresh surveys be conducted periodically once in three years in all the states/ UTs in accordance with the provisions of the Act and the revised report, the findings of the survey should be made a part of a computerised data base available on the websites of all concerned," the bench said.
"The responsibility of conducting the surveys is on the District Level Vigilance Committees and Sub Divisional Vigilance Committees of the states/ UTs and such committees should submit their reports to the NHRC. This should be done every three years and committees also should be reconstituted in every three years," it said.
The court passed the order on a petition filed by Public Union for Civil Liberties seeking its direction for effective implementation of law to abolish bonded labour.
"Bonded labour, it may be noticed, is rampant in brick kilns, stone quarries, crushing mines, beedi manufacturing, carpet weaving, construction industries, agriculture, in rural and urban unorganised and informal sector, power looms and cotton handlooms, fish processing etc.
The committees are directed to give more attention to these areas and take prompt action in case violation is noticed," the bench said.